Spinners help England win series by 3-0 against Sri Lanka



⚬ England clean sweeps Sri Lanka to win away series by 3 – 0


⚬ 100 wickets by spinners in this 3-match Test series


⚬ Ben Foakes was awarded as the player of the series


⚬ Joe Root’s team is the first English side to claim a clean sweep in Asia 


With the series won against Sri Lanka, thanks to the go-to spinner Jack Leach, England have rested front-line seamer, James Anderson. Stuart Broad was dropped from the England side for the first two Test matches to incorporate more spin options. Broad was called back in the third Test, a dead rubber, after James Anderson was rested. Consequently, Moeen Ali and Jack Leach helped England also win the third Test match, at Colombo by 42 runs. England thus achieved an away clean sweep of 3 – 0 against Sri Lanka for the first time in history.

The decision worked out fine for England as they have won the three-match Test series by 2-0. In fact, the second Test Match, at Pallekele, between Sri Lanka and England was witness to a new high for spinners. In the Test match between Sri Lanka and England, a total of 38 wickets were bagged by spinners from both teams combined. 

Although this Test series has no inputs to give to the cause of The Ashes or the World cup, England did set some major records in this series. 

England have now claimed three clean sweeps in away series of three or more Tests. Each of these away series wins of 3-0 has occurred with a gap of more than 50 years. The first time was against South Africa in 1895-96 and then against New Zealand in 1962-63.

English and Sri Lankan spinners in the Test series have claimed a combined 100 wickets out of total 111 bowler wickets taken in this series. This hundred wickets tally is the most in any series of fewer than five matches. Out of these 100 wickets, 51 were claimed by the Sri Lankan spinners at 31.56 whereas the English spinners sported a bowling average of 24.69 in their 49 wickets claimed. The second in the list for most wickets in any series of three or fewer Tests was 79, in the series played between New Zealand and Sri Lanka in 1998. 


Third Test scorecard: England 336 (Bairstow 110, Stokes 57, Sandakan 5-95) and 230 (Buttler 64, Dilruwan 5-88) beat Sri Lanka 240 (Karunaratne 83, de Silva 73, Rashid 5-49) and 284 (Mendis 86, Roshen 65, Leach 4-72, Moeen 4-92) by 42 runs

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